Strong showing for Leeds in survey of Europe's best locations for business

Tuesday, 05 October 2010

Leeds has achieved it best ranking to date in the European Cities Monitor, the influential index of business competitiveness published by global commercial property consultants Cushman and Wakefield.

Leeds has achieved it best ranking to date in the European Cities Monitor, the influential index of business competitiveness published by global commercial property consultants Cushman and Wakefield.

The annual survey is launched this week at Expo Real, one of Europe's main exhibitions and conferences for the commercial property industry. It shows Leeds has moved up the rankings of  'best European cities to locate a business' for a third year running.

Yorkshire's regional capital has improved its overall ranking in the list of Europe’s leading cities from 24th place in 2009 to 23rd place, ahead of Edinburgh and Glasgow and European capital cities such as Copenhagen, Rome, Moscow and Athens.

Leeds has also improved its ranking in terms of ‘quality of telecommunications’ and ‘external transport links’, two of the key factors when companies are deciding where to locate a business.. Importantly, the city's office market has retained its position as number one in Europe for value for money, again for the third year in succession.

The European Cities Monitor is based on interviews with senior executives from 500 of Europe's biggest companies and looks at the range of factors considered by companies when deciding where to locate their business operations. Key factors are cost and availability of qualified staff, access to markets, external transport links and and quality of telecommunications.

The 2010 shows that Leeds punches above its weight against all of these factors, ranking 10th for cost of staff, 16th for access to markets, 17th for availability of qualified staff, 18th for external transport links and 20th for quality of telecommunications.

Cllr Keith Wakefield, leader of Leeds City Council said:
"The results are a welcome indicator of the progress that Leeds is making and the work that's still to be done if we are to achieve our aim of putting Leeds firmly on the map as one of Europe's leading business locations. The survey shows that Leeds offers combination of strengths that make it a first class business location

"With Trinity Leeds, the £350 million retail and leisure development by Land Securities, now back on site and preparatory work underway on the new Leeds Arena, there is a real sense of momentum developing and we expect Leeds to continue to make progress up the rankings. The arena will play a key role in raising the city's profile nationally and internationally."

Gary Williamson, chief executive of Leeds, York and North Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce, said:
“Leeds is one of the UK’s leading business locations and the main driver for the regional economy but what this survey shows is that, despite one of the most serious recessions in living memory, the Leeds economy has the strength and resilience to consolidate and improve its competitive position within Europe.

Deborah Green, Chief Executive of Marketing Leeds said:
“These results are not just great news for the city but are also fitting recognition of the contribution made by so many individuals and organisations across the broad spectrum of business to make Leeds the vibrant place that it is. It is especially pleasing that the Leeds office market remains number one in Europe for value for money, making it particularly attractive in the current economic climate. “


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